Thursday NHL betting predictions
Best NHL bets to take on Thursday
By Bob Duff
Highlighting some of Thursday’s more interesting NHL showdowns, with odds courtesy of BetOnline.com:
Edmonton Oilers (+118) at Philadelphia Flyers (-130)
Goaltending was a major issue for the Flyers earlier this season but it’s a big reason why they’ve won six games in a row.
Steve Mason has won five straight for Philly and he made 42 saves in Tuesday’s 3-2 decision over Florida. Wayne Simmonds continued to carry the hot hand, scoring twice in that game. It was his second successive multi-goal game and 28th of his NHL career. Simmonds leads the NHL with eight power-play goals.
Edmonton has gone 3-0-2 in its last five road games. The five-game point streak is the longest by the Oilers since a 5-0-2 run from March 6 to April 1, 2012.
Edmonton captain Connor McDavid snapped a two-game point drought with a pair of assists in Tuesday’s 4-3 overtime loss at Buffalo. In 73 career NHL games, McDavid has never gone three games in a row without recording a point.
Pick: The Flyers (-130)
St. Louis Blues (-110) at New York Islanders (+100)
Home cooking is certainly proving to be tasty for the Blues this season, who are 12-1-3 at the Savvis Center. Trailing Montreal 2-0 in the third period Tuesday, the Blues rallied for the 3-2 OT decision and extended their home points streak to 13 games (10-0-3).
But can they take their show on the road? St. Louis is just 3-6-1 away from home but 8-1-1 overall in the last 10 games.
The Islanders improved their point streak to five games (4-0-1) via Tuesday’s 4-2 win over the New York Rangers. Defenseman Scott Mayfield, called up from AHL Bridgeport, scored in the game.
The last three wins by the Isles have come against Pittsburgh, Washington and the Rangers, three of the top teams in the NHL. Completion of a three-game homestand for the Islanders, who are 1-0-1 so far.
Pick: The Islanders (+100)
New York Rangers (-115) at Winnipeg Jets (+104)
One team struggling to find consistency and another coming off a heartbreaking loss clash in Manitoba’s capital city. The Rangers have alternated regualtion time wins and losses for eight successive games and considering they lost 4-2 Tuesday to the New York Islanders, this should be the win in their cycle.
But Rangers are dropping like flies. Forwards Rick Nash (lower-body injury) and Matt Puempel (concussion) were both lost during the Islanders game.
Michael Grabner, who leads the team with 13 goals, missed that game but is expected to meet the team in Winnipeg after travelling to Austria for his grandmother’s funeral.
The Jets squandered a 3-1 first-period lead and lost 4-3 in a shootout Tuesday to Detroit but the Jets are still 4-1-1 in their last six games. Rookie forward Patrik Laine has 17 goals, tying him for the NHL lead with Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby.
Pick: The Jets (+104)
Pittsburgh Penguins (-120) at Florida Panthers (+109)
Speaking of struggling teams, here’s the Panthers, who have lost five of six but three of those setbacks came in overtime, so at least they got a point.
Defenseman Keith Yandle was expected to miss Tueday’s loss to the Flyers with a lower-body injury but suited up for his 578th consecutive game. But team scoring leader Jonathan Marchessault (10-9-19) has missed two straight with a lower-body injury.
Pittsburgh has scored 19 goals during its three-game winning streak. Evgeni Malkin has points in six straight and eight of nine. Crosby has points in five in a row.
Pick: The Penguins (-120)
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